Gilligan hypothesized that as younger children girls are more inclined towards caring, and boys are more inclined towards justice (Lefton, 2000). Gilligan suggests this difference is due to gender and the child’s relationship with the mother (Lefton, 2000).
Carol Gilligan has provided a framework for the moral orientations and development of women. Current research on explicit schemas as to how women come to real-life decisions when faced with real-life dilemmas is limited. Gilligan’s theory is comprised of three stages: self-interest, self-sacrifice, and post-conventional thinking where each level is more complex. Overall, Gilligan found that girls do develop morality, differently than others. Gilligan’s theory holds particular implications for adolescent girls specifically as this is typically when they enter the transition from level two to level three. However, as do all theories Gilligan’s has advantages and disadvantages that should be considered when looking at moral orientations